Water vapour is the most important greenhouse gas in the atmosphere, needed for life. Water is constantly cycling through the atmosphere. Its concentration depends on temperature and weather patterns, and varies a lot across the globe and through the year.
Diana followed up Devon County Council’s response to our initial letter about Particulart on 21 December 2014 by email:
Just a note to thank you for taking the time to give a thorough response to our letter.
I remain concerned that the long term health impacts aren’t being assessed and I will feed that into the low emissions strategy plan feedback for ECC.
The Government document on the guidance in relation to reducing contractor costs did seem to me to include PPP contracts and I hope the Council can follow that up. How much is the value of the contract with Viridor?
I do hope that DCC will look to introduce a zero waste strategy over the coming years, rather than continuing with these incineration plans.
Perhaps just before Christmas wasn’t the best time to write, and a bit of prodding was required. It elicited the following response on 13 February 2015:
The value of the Exeter Efw contract is around £210 million over the contract term. As you can imagine the investment to build these plants is significant – approx £46 million for the Exeter facility. Hence the contracts for their operation have to be for a longer term duration in order to cover the capital and operational costs.
The County Council working in partnership with its Districts are committed through our Waste & Resource Management Strategy (http://www.devon.gov.uk/dcc_waste_strategy_review.pdf) to manage waste at the top of the waste hierarchy promoting waste reduction, re-use and recycling before recovery and we have high targets to aim for. Devon is still among the top performers nationally for recycling and the opening of the Exeter and Plymouth plants will not affect that. The Efw plants are being used to divert waste away from landfill and recover value from it, not to impact on waste reduction, re-use and recycling.
You’ve probably heard of Lent fasts: giving up chocolate or biscuits or swearing for the 40 days before Easter. But did you know that in 2014, the Church of England in the south west ran a Carbon Fast? And they’re going to be running another one again this year.
During Lent 2015, which starts on 18 February, the particular focus for the Fast is on the link between our use of water, which needs to be pumped, cleaned and stored; our energy use; and the things we consume. For example, it takes 11,000 litres to make a pair of jeans and 140 litres of water to make a single cup of coffee. For each day of Lent, everyone who signs up will receive a daily email with an action to consider (except Sundays) and a specially written reflection. The Carbon Fast 2015 will also consider broader climate issues, in the run up to the Paris negotiations in December. You can find out more on the EcoChurch Southwest website.
“Particulart” is going to be involved in the Carbon Fast through a new exhibition in Bristol Cathedral called “A Stitch in Time”. Watch this space for timings.
Anyone can undertake the Carbon Fast Challenge at any time of the year. The 40 days need not be the 40 days of Lent. You see, carbon fasting doesn’t need to cost anything. Every step you take counts for something. You will be surprised at how much difference even the smallest steps will make. And then you can keep taking them.